24 Aug 2023
PAI Partners (“PAI”), a pre-eminent private equity firm, today announces that it has agreed to acquire Alphia, Inc. (“Alphia”), one of the largest pet food co-manufacturers in North America, from J.H. Whitney Capital Partners (“J.H. Whitney”). Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Headquartered in Denver, Alphia is a leading national manufacturer of pet food in the U.S., manufacturing more than one billion pounds of dry pet food and treats annually on behalf of leading pet food brands and retailers. Alphia also provides milling, R&D, innovation, warehousing, transportation, and distribution services. The company has six manufacturing facilities across the U.S. and is the parent company of LANI, an ingredient milling solutions company, and Veracity, a warehousing and logistics provider. Combined, Alphia offers its partners complete farm-to-bowl custom solutions.
J.H. Whitney acquired Alphia’s predecessor, C.J. Foods, Inc., in 2014. Alphia was formed through the merger of American Nutrition, Inc. and C.J. Foods, Inc. in 2020 to create a national pet food manufacturing platform, delivering best-in-class food safety and unparalleled value for its customers.
This transaction underlines PAI’s expertise in the Food & Consumer sector and its particular experience in pet food and contract manufacturing, with representative investments in Royal Canin, Provimi, Diana Pet Food and Refresco. With the support of PAI, Alphia will seek to accelerate further North American growth, both organically and through acquisitions.
David McLain, CEO & President of Alphia, said: “We appreciate the many years of support and partnership with J.H. Whitney, during which time we created Alphia, one of the leading pet food co-manufacturing platforms in the world. PAI is committed to our ongoing vision for growth and shares the common values of innovation, food safety and industry leadership.”
Bob Williams, a Senior Managing Director at J.H. Whitney, said: “We have had a great partnership with the Alphia management team. Through deep investment in people, systems and facilities, with a constant focus on customers, Alphia has developed into a leading and pre-eminent co-manufacturer in the pet food industry. We are proud of the team and look forward to seeing Alphia continue its successful growth with PAI.”
Maud Brown, a Partner at PAI and Head of PAI’s US Team, said: “We are excited to announce our investment in Alphia, which represents our second platform in the U.S. We are committed to building the PAI franchise in the U.S. and look forward to our continued growth and success in this market.”
Winston Song, a Partner at PAI and Consumer Lead in the U.S., said: “Alphia is a best-in-class company and plays an invaluable role in the value chain of pet food and treats, an exciting consumer category with strong secular tailwinds. Pet parents continue to seek out innovation, quality and value – Alphia has set the industry standard as the trusted partner to many leading brands and retailers. We look forward to partnering with David McLain and his mission-driven team as we continue to invest behind Alphia to grow and scale the platform.”
Completion is subject to customary closing conditions, including the receipt of certain regulatory approvals.
Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC acted as financial adviser to Alphia. Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP served as legal counsel to J.H. Whitney and Alphia, and Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP served as legal counsel to PAI.